Prep 25 mins
Cook 10 hrs
Based on Alton Brown's recipe, using non-fat milk and sugar substitute. Works best with Splenda brand, but NutraSweet or SweetOne can be used easily. (The cooking time after adding the sweetener is not really long enough to break down the aspartame; if it's not sweet enough for you, you might add an extra packet.)
- 3 1⁄2 ounces large pearl tapioca (approximately 1/2 cup)
- 2 cups cold water
- 2 1⁄2 cups nonfat milk
- 1⁄2 cup heavy cream
- 1 egg yolk
- 6 (1 g) packets sugar substitute (up to 9 packets, to taste)
- 1 lemon, zest of
- 1 pinch salt
- Soak tapioca, covered, in cold water overnight. Drain well and place into slow cooker.
- Add milk, cream and salt. Cook on high 2 hours, stirring occasionally.
- In a small bowl, whisk sugar substitute into egg yolk. Temper small amounts of pudding base (1-2 tbsp at a time) into egg yolk to bring the temperature up slowly. When you've added about 1 cup of pudding base, transfer back into slow cooker. Add lemon zest, stir to combine and cook an additional 15 minutes.
- Transfer to a medium bowl. Place a layer of plastic wrap down so it touches the surface of the pudding (to prevent a skin from forming), cool at room temperature for about 1 hour, then refrigerate. Serve cold.
- Substitutions: You can use 3 cups whole milk in place of the skim milk and heavy cream; the fat content will be about the same. Do not use all skim milk - it will be flat and the flavors will be very muted.
- Substitutions: You can leave out the lemon zest and use 1 1/2 tsp good, pure vanilla extract. You could also add 1 tbsp Dutched cocoa powder to the egg yolk and add 2 ounces melted bittersweet chocolate when you add the tempered egg yolk to the pot. Other potential flavorants: maple syrup, Irish Cream liqueur, instant espresso powder, fruit purées -- use your imagination.